Exploring Reggae Culture in Kenya
Written by Elizabeth Nyambura on July 1, 2021
When you listen to any reggae song what is the first thing that gets into your mind?
Yes, right we all associate songs with a moment in our lives. According to Wikipedia, Reggae and the associated Jamaican culture became so popular in Kenya that in the early 1990s, the government-owned Kenya Broadcasting Corporation KBC radio station launched the program Reggae Times for reggae fans who tuned to the English service on Tuesday mornings.
There are reggae music artists in Kenya, from the likes of Wyre, Redsan, the late Mighty King Kong. We also have MCs like teargas, MCFullstop and ‘The reggae boyz’ on NRG .There are shows such as Nrg Weeeked Show which airs every Saturday from 7-9pm and The NRG Showdown on Friday from 10PM-12am. This bonds our listeners to the deep root of reggae culture.
Kenyan reggae is a fusion of Lingala, Gengetone, Genge, Kapuka, Hip hop, etc. This culture has really influenced the Kenyans, from dressing to the food to the slang. I remember my first time listening to reggae , it was during the ‘disco matanga’, -the popular way to fundraise funds for a burial in some places in Kenya. Imagine this little girl who has seen humane and a community come together to help each other because of reggae. Amazing isn’t it? Not only isn’t the music educational but also builds one’s positive attitude towards life. Therefore most Kenya artists have used the genre to create their own art.
Look around your house.I am pretty sure that there is an aspect of reggae culture.From the shoes you wear, to the food you eat, to what you do during your leisure time. That is how deep reggae has impacted our culture. Therefore, take your time today and celebrate those amazing moments that reggae has created for you and your loved ones. Wagwan fam. Have an amazing International Reggae Day!